The Followers of Fate

Once we have experienced fate the only way to think it doesn’t exist is to close our mind to its reality.

I won’t do that. However I also won’t try and come up with some nonsensical set of almost believable half-truths in order to comfort myself by attempting to explain something that is quite literally outside human understanding. I know fate is real because I have experienced it multiple times. That I don’t recognize it during my mundane day-to-day existence does not mean I have suddenly become the master of my own destiny and able to manipulate the threads of time and fate during those times.

Am I saying we don’t have free will? If I believe fate exists, how can I also believe free-will exists?

That is the quandary, isn’t it? That is the reason people spend enormous effort coming up with ludicrously complicated scenarios whose ultimate purpose is to grant us peace of mind by illustrating how we obviously have free will.

What do I think? I think the semblance of free will is not free will at all.

Yesterday I tweeted this:-

“The essential problem is that if there is fate,
there is no free will.
We can’t choose when it is fate,
and when it is not.”

Someone later asked me, “Why not? Does fate have such a strong hold over us?” I’ll answer that in a straightforward fashion. Which, if you’ve read much of my work, you’ll realize is most uncharacteristic. Yes, I think the grip of fate is so tight not even the gods can escape it.

Comfort. We humans have a desperate need to believe we can change our fate. But ultimately we cannot. As I said in an earlier blog post… “Perhaps the root thing about the fate, or its lack, is this… Even if the Fates are not, then what will happen, still will.”

Is this a fatalistic outlook? To answer that question, consider the word used to describe the outlook. Fatalistic. What does “fatal” mean? It means to die. What is the inescapable fate of every living thing? It is to die. That fate is inescapable. That is fate, and therefore fate is inescapable.

Should we simply throw up our hands and say, “If nothing I do matters, I should do nothing.” If that is your fate, you will, and there is nothing I or anyone else can do that can change it.

However doing nothing is not the fate of humanity, or indeed of any life. You see everything we do matters. Life matters, and life demands not only to be sustained but also propagated. Our most inconsequential seeming action has effects that ripple across our entire world. Simply because we don’t perceive those effects does not render them void.

Fate exists, but fate is far more complex than just us. In order to begin grasping what this mysterious thing we know and call “fate” might be, we have to stop limiting our thoughts to ourself.

Fate is infinitely more complex than merely affecting me.

How much is “infinitely”? Well, take the fates of a butterfly and a human who live on opposite sides of the world. Surely the two are so remote as to render the impact of the fate of either on the other negligible? Perhaps to our limited human minds that seems valid. But we are not the Universe, are we? We are merely its creatures. The truth is that everything matters, regardless of whether we think it matters or not.

Simply because we are unaware does not render any action inconsequential.

The result of every action impacts every other action. The conductor of the symphony we call life, is Fate.

If a tree falls in a forest and there is no one there to hear it, does it make a noise?

That question explains Fate as succinctly as any other thought I’ve had. We think we matter, but in the grand scheme of things we don’t. The tree’s fall is fated, as is the impact of its fall on the entire earth. That humanity remains unaware does not negate fate.

Ripples and flows,
from whence they come,
we don’t know,
and to whence they wend?
Why, to their ultimate end…

Fate. We can’t fight it, even if we think we can.

I have more to say on Fate. Much more.  If your fate is modified by mine you may want to subscribe to this blog.  Is that a choice? If it is, I suspect the Fates have already determined its answer.

About C.G.Ayling

Musing misuser of words, lover of lyrical literature, author, occasional contrary thoughts. An honorable man’s name, in memoriam.
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